The British Petroleum oil spill was capped in July of 2010. A year afterwards, the tourists are returning to the Gulf beaches. With that in mind, BP went to court, stating its damages settlement should be reduced. Others, however, believe reports of a tourism boom are far from correct. Source for this article - Rise in gulf tourism prompts BP to ask for discount by Newsytype.com.
Beaches not enough anymore
There was almost no Gulf of Mexico tourism last year. There were no tourists hitting beaches after April 2010 when 11 men were killed. This was while the offshore oil drill rig that British Petroleum owned exploded. For three months, oil flowed to the ocean. It was capped successfully at that point.
Bringing tourism back
This year, reports claim the area is enjoying a reversal in tourism. The weekend of July 4 had 100 percent occupancy. This was for all escape rentals. The USA Today Travel report showed this. It said that "tourists are back digging their toes into white sand beaches and scarfing down fried shrimp at restaurants along the Gulf of Mexico."
BP petitions court
British Petroleum sees this as evidence that the oil spill didn't adversely impact the tourism industry to almost the degree feared. On Friday, BP files a request in the courtroom. It wanted the damages agreement to be lowered. The claim said that "there is no basis to assume that claimants, with very limited exceptions, will incur a future loss related to the spill."
The Gulf oil leak settlement formula has been something the company does not like. Double the estimated 2010 losses were what the agreement was with the formula developed by Gulf Coast Says Facility's Kenneth R. Feinberg. BP doesn't think it is a fair or correct formula. The "future factor" isn't estimated correctly.
Reports might be inflated
Some business owners, however, say they aren't feeling the tourism reversal. The spill is still affecting some businesses, many suggest. The good reports seem more than what they are because those who do the reports want tourism to be lured back.
Reversal from BP
Much of the reversal has to do with BP's aggressive media campaign to promote tourism in the region. A question came up on investment site Seeking Alpha Friday. It asked, "Did BP agree to spend tens of millions of dollars to aggressively advertise travel in the Gulf states in order to avoid even larger court settlements down the road?"
Rick Outzen of the Independent News summed up on his blog what might be on the minds of many in the Gulf region today:
"Our state and local leaders have been so quick to declare that the beaches, seafood and Gulf Coast are doing fine that we may have screwed up the chances of the remaining outstanding BP oil spill claims to be paid."
USA Today Travel
New York Times